The Winds of Change

Pak­istani women are in­creas­ingly mak­ing an im­pact at the in­ter­na­tional level though it will take time for this to make a dif­fer­ence in the plight of women at home..

Southasia - - Cover Story -

Ac­cord­ing to a re­cent poll con­ducted by the Thom­son Reuters Foun­da­tion, Pak­istan is the third most dan­ger­ous coun­try for women, pre­ceded only by Afghanistan and the Congo. With do­mes­tic vi­o­lence, dis­mal health­care and bru­tal poverty serv­ing as prime in­di­ca­tors, Pak­istan’s in­clu­sion in the list is a no-brainer. The poll cited that around a 1000 women and girls were mur-

By Arsla Jawaid dered for vi­o­lat­ing their fam­ily’s honor and close to 90 per­cent of Pak­istani women suf­fer from do­mes­tic abuse, in some shape or form. How­ever, de­spite the odds against them, women in Pak­istan must also be in­cluded on the list of the most re­silient and brave women in the world.

In­nu­mer­able sta­tis­tics, count­less polls and daily in­ci­dents point to scores of honor killings, acid at­tacks and other forms of do­mes­tic vi­o­lence that re­flect the pa­tri­ar­chal, ar­chaic laws still in­her­ent in a coun­try whose elite in­sist that it is in­deed on the road to mod­ern­iza­tion.

Since its in­cep­tion, Pak­istan has boasted of its women start­ing with first lady, Fa­tima Jin­nah and Rana Li­aquat Ali Khan, both of whom worked dili­gently for women’s rights and po­lit­i­cal re­forms. Pak­istan is also proud of its

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